Best Bets for Kansas


The NASCAR Cup Series will travel to Kansas Speedway this week for another intermediate track race. This should be one of the better races on the schedule to watch because the drivers can move all around the track to search for grip. Goodyear had a problem with tires exploding at this track last year, so hopefully they have that issue taken care of. Bubba Wallace won at Kansas at 22-1 odds and his teammate (Kurt Busch) won at 16-1 odds last year. There is a chance we get a driver with odds greater than 10-1 in Victory Lane Sunday, but I still think the favorites are going to be tough to beat.

23XI Racing won both races at Kansas in the Gen-7 car last year and the Toyota’s all looked good in the two races. Hendrick Motorsports has looked the fastest this year in the intermediate track aero package. I will be betting drivers from both teams Sunday.

My pick to win the race this week before any cars get on the track is William Byron. That pick is based solely on the stats from the intermediate track races this year and the stats in the Gen-7 car at Kansas last year. Byron led 176 laps and won the race at Las Vegas. He also led 193 laps and finished fourth last week at Dover. I wanted to bet Kyle Larson and William Byron, but the juice just wasn’t worth the squeeze from a profit standpoint. I decided to go with Larson over Byron because the stats were a bit skewed since Larson was wrecked last week, and the No. 5 car has been the best at Kansas over the last six races in the Heartland.



* The odds are from DraftKings Sportsbook. The odds could change between the time of this article and the time you place your bet.

** The first number is the amount of money based on the second number (the amount of the wager). So if you bet $1 on Kyle Larson at 5-1 odds, you will win $5.


Here are my bets for Kansas based on a $100 bankroll for the race….

KYLE LARSON (5-1): I bet Larson last week at 5-1 odds as an insurance policy so I would get my money back if he dominated the race. The No. 5 car likely would have destroyed the field last week if qualifying wasn’t rained out and he did not get “Chastained” during the race. Larson has the best Driver Rating (120-6), led the most laps (291) and has the third-best average finishing position (7.5) over the last six races at Kansas. He said after the race last week, “I have the fastest car every week, but we just have had bad luck in the races.” Sooner or later his luck is going to turn around and I will bet it happens this week at Kansas.


DENNY HAMLIN (8-1): Hamlin has the second-best stats at Kansas behind Kyle Larson. He has the second-best Driver Rating (107.2), led the second-most laps (122) and Hamlin has the second-best finishing position (6.5) over the last six races at Kansas. Hamlin finished second in the last race at Kansas and he owns the cars that won both races at Kansas last year. I am sure Hamlin went over to the 23XI Racing shop to see what they were doing to win those races. Hamlin should have a good chance to win Sunday “if” he can avoid losing the race in the pits.


CHRISTOPHER BELL (9-1): Bell came out as the top driver when I ran the stats using the races this year on the intermediate tracks (Auto Club, Las Vegas and Dover) and combined them with the stats from the two races in the Gen-7 car at Kansas last year. Bell won the pole at Auto Club, but crashed early in the race. He came back the next week and finished fifth at Las Vegas. He also finished sixth last week at Dover, so he has been good on the intermediate tracks in 2023. Bell finished third and fifth in the two races at Kansas last year. I expect the race Sunday to be a battle between Hendrick Motorsports and the Toyota’s. Bell is the best driver in the Toyota camp (in my opinion).


CHASE ELLIOTT (12-1): I was all in with Elliott last week and that sure backfired. His teammates (William Byron and Kyle Larson) had the same setup and they also had two of the fastest cars in the race. The No. 9 team decided to use their own setup, instead of copying their teammates. Elliott had tire-wear problems through-out the race. I expect the No. 9 team will work a bit more closely with the No. 24 and No. 5 teams this week to get Elliott into Victory Lane. He won at Kansas in 2018 and Elliott finished second in 2021. I will bet he can win the AdventHealth 400 Sunday.


ROSS CHASTAIN (14-1): I hate this pick. Not because Chastain does not have a good chance to win Sunday; but because I am still mad at him for wrecking Brennan Poole and Kyle Larson for no reason. It is hard to ignore the stats this week, so I will include Mr. “If you can’t beat them, wreck’em” in my betting card. Chastain finished seventh in both races at Kansas last year. He also finished second at Dover, third at Auto Club and 12th at Las Vegas this year. I would sacrifice the money I would win to see someone completely drive through the No. 1 car Sunday, but I will also be happy if he won the race and put some cash into my pocket.


BUBBA WALLACE (18-1): Kurt Busch won the first race at Kansas last year and then 23XI Racing gave that same car to Wallace for the second race. Guess what happened? The same car won the second race too. I am not sure they can use that car this year since the front of the Toyota’s were redesigned before the season began, but whatever they found, 23XI Racing will bring it back to the track Sunday. I feel better about this pick because Wallace finished fourth at Las Vegas. That track is similar in size and shape to Kansas, so the speed from the race in Sin City should translate into speed Sunday. Wallace should have a good chance to win again at Kansas.  


Good luck Sunday!

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